This Eid Ul Fitr promises to be chock full of cinematic treats for Pakistanis. 3 local offerings, and one Hollywood blockbuster, are ready to set the screen ablaze. “The Legend of Maula Jatt”, “Tich Button”, “Lafangey: Chapter 1”, and “Fast and Furious 9” are all set to release on the same day. Big money will be made this “Choti Eid”, but obviously profits will not be shared equally amongst each film.
It’s obvious that “The Legend of Maula Jatt” will take the lion’s share of the profits from the religious holiday. Also, judging by the performance of the “Fast and Furious” films in the past, as well as the massive response to the spin off “Hobbs and Shaw” at the local box office, we can assume that “Fast 9” will be a big money spinner.
As for “Tich Button”, the great response to its trailer as well as the star cast means the public will be very interested in watching the action-comedy cum romance flick. It will play second fiddle to “TLMJ” and “F9” during Eid though, at least for the first few days. Depending on word-of-mouth and the initial response to each film, we’ll be able to speculate on its total. Right now, “Tich Button” seems to be the runner up in the eventual box office race.
“Lafangey: Chapter 1”. At the moment,is another commercially enticing offering to the public this Eid Ul Fitr. Being a film targeting Eid audiences the horror comedy starring Sami Khan, Saleem Mairaj, Mubeen Gabol and Mani can sure give a tough run to the others at Boxoffice.Granted, the trailer for “Lafangey: Chapter 1” hasn’t dropped yet. Depending on the response to it, we will be able to speculate on its eventual box office returns.
One of these films will definitely meet the same fate “Load Wedding” did in 2018. It was released alongside “JPNA 2” and “Parwaaz Hai Junoon” and ended up losing screens and ticket sales to the other two.
The Eid Dangal in Pakistan must end. It’s an unsustainable model for the film industry that is doing more harm than good. Yes, the biggest blockbusters should be released on the most bankable holidays. That’s he model the west has adopted as well and it seems to be successful for the highest budget features like superhero films or huge action flicks. However, that doesn’t mean other months should be left barren.
The Bollywood model has successfully released huge money spinners every month. This January the Ajay Devgan starrer “Tanhaji: The Unsung Warrior” managed to make over 330 Cr INR. Similarly, the Akshay Kumar starrer “Sooryavanshi” is set to make a huge mark at the Indian Box Office at the end of March.
It’s not like Pakistan hasn’t accomplished similar feats, admittedly in much smaller capacity. However, there have been examples of huge hits in the new wave of Pakistani Cinema that have not come out on Eid and demolished other Eid releases.
“Teefa in Trouble” was released on a non Eid weekend and it made 50 Cr worldwide. “The Donkey King” was released on a non Eid weekend and made 25 Cr just from Pakistan. Non Eid successes are very much possible within Pakistan for the right film. An Eid weekend fight will only eat into the profits of each film rather than generate healthy competition.
With fewer and fewer cinema halls left in the country for the masses, and multiplexes largely catering to the upper-middle and upper classes it will become nigh impossible for local cinema to be sustained only on the basis of a few profitable weeks.